By Lucas Carr | firstname.lastname@example.org
The Radford Men’s Soccer team began their three-game road trip against West Virginia. The Highlanders had not won a game all season but were starving for a victory on the road against the Power Five Mountaineers.
They did not shy away from the challenge.
Freshman Forward Amadou Diop’s two goals sealed the 4-1 victory for the Highlanders on Tuesday night.
Radford got their offense started early with a long goal from Victor Valls just before the 10th minute. Valls had his first shot blocked and off the rebound, the senior midfielder found the back of the net. Not long after, before the 20th minute, senior forward Kieran Roberts lobbed a pass from Diop over the keeper’s head and into the net. The Highlanders lead was tripled just before the halftime whistle as Diop ricocheted one off his foot and into the goal.
Diop continued his busy night with his second goal of the match in the 56th minute off a free kick, following a foul just outside the penalty box. A low-rolling shot whipped around the wall of Mountaineer defenders and found its way into the net. This goal put the Highlanders up 4-0 as the game moved into its final leg.
Although it seemed too little, too late, West Virginia scored on freshman goalie Sam Farrell with a header in the 57th minute. Despite the goal by the Mountaineers, Farrell made an impressive first start in a collegiate match. He made three total saves including what was deemed the Play of the Match as he dove to the right and blocked a West Virginia penalty kick in the 70th minute.
The Highlanders put on a clinic against the Big 12 Mountaineers, racking up some serious stats. They had 18 total shots with nine of them being on target. Only tallying 46 total shots through five games, this made it a very impressive feat. Diop tallied six shots with two on goal, two goals, and one assist. Behind him, Roberts had five shots, four on target and one goal.
Head coach, Bryheem Hancock, said this of his players following the game: “Every guy in that locker room worked extremely hard in the last 72 hours to turn the page and prepare for tonight. It was a good result against a good West Virginia team. Now we must move on and prepare for Longwood on Saturday.”
The men’s soccer team will go head to head against one more Power Five team as they will see the Virginia Cavaliers in Charlottesville.
Following an impressive win against the Mountaineers, the Highlanders move onto their second road test with a Big South match-up against Longwood. They will face up against the 3-4 Lancers Saturday, Sept. 29 at 6 p.m.
Radford will finish up their three-game trek on the road against Gardner Webb on Oct. 3 and will come back home to play Presbyterian College in Cupp Memorial Stadium on Oct. 6.
Let’s wish Head Coach Hancock and the Highlanders on the rest of their season as they enter Big South play.
Photo Credit: (RU Athletics)